Welcome to Helsingin Luistelijat Skating School!
The Skating School will begin in September and continue until April. Skaters will have 15 sessions in both Fall and Spring season, making a total of 30 sessions during the whole skating year. A Christmas break will be held between the Fall and Spring seasons.
Usually children participate in the Skating School once a week, and they are placed in a group that suits best their age and level of skating skills. The aim in the beginners' groups is to learn basic skating skills in a playful atmosphere and to learn how to act in a group. In the more advanced groups, skaters will learn basic figure skating skills. All Skating Schools offer the different levels, so you can choose the time and place that best suit you. We will take care of finding the most suitable group for your child.
Teachers of the Skating School follow the progress of the skaters and make changes in the groups as they observe skaters' skills developing. If you want, it is also possible to attend two different Skating School sessions per week.
COACHES AND CONTACT PERSONS
The Head coach of the Helsingin Luistelijat Skating school is Susanna Peltola.
All the Skating School teachers have been trained by Helsingin Luistelijat. We aim that each group will have the same teacher throughout the entire skating year. In case of an exceptional absence, there will be a substitute teacher well instructed to take care of the group.
Each time skaters come to the Skating School, they should sign in at the contact person's desk, situated near the entrance. She/he is there to answer your questions and to give up-to-date information. During the Skating School sessions, a contact person is always present at the ice rink.
- Skates and warm clothes - read more about the skates in the bottom of this page!
- At the beginning of the season, skaters receive a Skating School passport in which they collect stamps and feedback from the teacher. You will get the attendance stamp from the contact person at the ice rink before each session. The contact person will also tell you when the passport will be held back for collecting the teacher's greetings.
- Each skater also receives a name tag, which should always be attached to the skater's clothes at the ice rink.
- Each Skating School group has its own colour. Both the skaters and the teacher keep their own groups' coloured ribbon attached to the left skate boot. The ribbon is to be attached on top of the instep, in the lacing. If you use skate covers, the ribbon must be attached to the same area (at the middle seam), so that it can be easily observed. The colours help the skaters and teachers to easily recognise their own group. In addition, having the coloured ribbon in the left foot will help children to identify their feet and hence help in teaching the moves, especially in the youngest groups.
Once the Skating School fee that has been paid, skaters will receive the club's membership card, which will entitle you to discounts in described here.
CODE OF CONDUCT AT THE ICE RINK
- Come to the ice rink in a positive mood and without a fuss, preferably at least 15 minutes before the beginning of the session.
- The contact person will tell the skaters the right number of the locker room; this instruction must be followed even though some other locker room might appear more attractive because of its emptiness. Because of the large number of skaters attending the Skating Schools, locker rooms may get crowded at times, this is why we ask you to take good care of your belongings. The club is not responsible for goods disappeared or damaged during the sessions.
- Only one parent/guardian to the locker room with the skater.
- The most effective way to enjoy the teaching is to be on time on the ice when the session starts.
- It is forbidden to go on the ice before the teachers welcome the children.
- Coming on the ice on foot is not allowed.
- Chewing-gum on the ice is dangerous and therefore strictly forbidden.
- Parents are welcome to follow the Skating Schools, the best way of doing this is in the stands or in the cafeteria. At those ice rinks that do not have stands or a cafeteria, we kindly ask you to follow the sessions from a small distance.
- Leaning onto the borders is not allowed as it disturbs the activities on the ice.
- It is very important that skaters can focus entirely on their groups' activities and on the teacher's instructions to ensure good learning conditions for the children.
The Skating School fee includes a group insurance for all skaters under 15 years old in the Skating School. This insurance is valid in skating schools organised by the member clubs of the Finnish Figure Skating Association, and in the additional activities attached to them. The insurance is also valid on instant outward and return journeys to and from these events.
For the club to obtain the insurance correctly, we ask you to fill out carefully all the indicated data when enrolling on the Skating School.
Unfortunately a Skating School session may sometimes have to be cancelled because of competitions, tournaments or damages at the ice rink. We aim at informing about these cancellations as soon as possible by e-mail, via the contact persons at the ice rinks and also at the Helsingin Luistelijat Skating School web page, under the link “ajankohtaista” (news).
If a session has to be cancelled, a replacement session will be offered at some other ice rinks Helsingin Luistelijat Skating School. In this case, the contact person will give you a voucher that you should present to the other ice rinks contact person. If none of the offered replacement sessions suit the skater, there will be no other refund option for the cancelled session.
The Skating School enrollment is done separately for each ice rink. If a skater misses a session, it is not possible to replace the session in another Helsingin Luistelijat Skating School at another ice rink. In case of illness for more than two weeks, skaters may get some refund in their Skating School fee against furnishing a medical certificate.
The Skating School information is given by e-mail and by the contact persons at the rinks. Should there be a change in your e-mail address after your enrollment, please contact the Helsingin Luistelijat office (luistelukoulut(at)hl.fi).
The skaters' most important equipment is good skates. A proper skate is made of quality leather and it has a built-in arch for support of the foot. The most suitable skates for figure skating can be bought from the skating accessories shops listed below.
The tongue of the skate is padded and the skate has a 2-3 cm heel. The leg must not be too high. A good skate boot doesn't necessarily feel comfortable at first; it has to be”run in”. The blade of a figure skate is swing-like; it has a furrow in the middle and a toe pick at the front.
Inside the skate, use a light and well-fitting sock (not woollen socks). This way you'll be able to lace the boot properly. Always use clean socks, as they are the warmest.
LACING THE BOOT
Start lacing from the lowest part of the boot. You can leave some space for the toes to move, but at the instep and ankle area the laces must be done firmly to give enough support to the ankle. The leg is tight enough if your index finger fits in between the leg and the foot at the back of the boot.
To keep the lacing from loosing, make a knot before the first set of hooks. End the lacing with a tight knot at the top. You can hide the knot inside the boot next to the tongue, to avoid the laces hanging loose. Laces that are too long should be shortened to fit the boot.
The boot must give support to the ankle and ankles must remain straight inside the boots. Skating becomes difficult and hurtful on the feet, if ankles cannot be held straight (see picture 2). A good skate boot can be recognised by holding the skate horizontally (picture 3): the leg should remain stiff and not bend downwards loosely.
MAINTENANCE OF THE SKATES
The blades are extremely sensitive and can be easily damaged, so we advise you to always use blade guards when walking with the skates outside the ice.
After returning to the locker room after the session, remove the guards immediately and dry the blades carefully with an absorbing tissue or chamois.
Keep the skates preferably in two separate tissue-made bags, and without the guards. Even good blades get rusty if the guards are left on. Prefer guards made of plastic and make sure to clean them from eventual sand and other improperties.
At home, we recommend that you take the skates out of their bag and leave them to air, so that they dry also on the inside. The skates shouldn't nevertheless be aired next to a radiator, as the leather easily becomes brittle.
Skates that have been well taken care will maintain their value at the resale market.
SHARPENING THE BLADES
The sharpening of figure skates is completely different from that of hockey skates. You must not damage the blades with an unsuitable sharpening technique. The following stores are experts in figure skate sharpening:
Malmin raitti 17, 00700 Helsinki (Malmi)
Minna Canthin katu 18, 00250 Helsinki (Töölö)
Taitoluistinhuolto Tommi Piiroinen
Raappavuorentie 10, 01600 Vantaa (Myyrmäen jäähalli)
Pallokuja 6, 00980 Helsinki (Vuosaaren jäähalli)
Kavallinmäki 15, 02710 Espoo (Viherlaakso)
Urheilupuistontie 3, 02120 Espoo (Metro Areenan harjoitushalli)
Talttakuja 6, 00700 Helsinki (Malmin jäähalli)
SM - Skate Marketing
Sarkkakuja 2, 04300 Tuusula
Warm and stretchy clothes are most suitable on the ice, as they offer an ease of movement. Quilted jackets and overalls are most often too thick and stiff, and it's difficult to move in them.
A warm turtleneck along with a wool shirt or a cardigan can be used on the ice. Pants made of an elastic material, leggings and jumpsuits are suitable. The legs of the pants must not be too wide. If you wish, you can also use a skating dress with tights/leggings and a fleece jacket/cardigan.
It is good to wear a warm knitted cap to cover the head, and gloves. The gloves must be clean (no sand etc. should be brought onto the ice). It is also recommended that the youngest skaters use a helmet at first.
SKATING ACCESSORIES STORES
Malmin raitti 17, 00700 Helsinki (Malmi)
Pakilantie 95, 00670 Helsinki (Paloheinä)
SM - Skate Marketing
Sarkkakuja 2, 04300 Tuusula
The stores also sell used skates. By showing the Helsingin Luistelijat membership card, you may get a discount at some of the stores when buying new skates.
MOVING UP FROM THE SKATING SCHOOL
After the skating school, it is possible to continue to advance in the sport by moving up to more advanced training groups, and further into competitive groups, in individual figure skating, in ice dance or in synchronized team skating.
If the skater isn't interested in competing or her/his skills do not reach the competitive level, it is also possible to move from skating school up to the amateurs' group, which offer training twice a week.
Skaters are selected for the competitive paths through try-outs or by individual invitation to the first training groups at the individual figure skating section (Minitähdet-group, Group 6 or amateurs), the synchronized skating section (beginners team Miniflowers) or the ice dance section (beginners group Minidance). These groups prepare skaters for the competitive level and they offer 2-3 trainings a week.
You find more information on the competitive training groups and teams on this website under the headings of "Jäätanssi", "Muodostelmaluistelu" and "Yksinluistelu".
Helsingin Luistelijat also offers skating for adults: a skating school, ice dance and figure skating groups as well as the adult synchronized skating teams. Read more here.
All skating school skaters can take part in two performances during the skating year. In December, there is a Christmas celebration for the entire club, and in spring the Helsingin Luistelijat Ice Show. During the Skating School sessions, there are also smaller events such as a costume party, bring-a-friend session and a Spring carneval, from which you will get more information closer to the events.
THE CLUB'S OFFICE
Teuvo Pakkalantie 12 A-B
telephone: 044 262 6561 (Susanna)
We hope you enjoy the skating season with Helsingin Luistelijat skating club!
Head coach of skating school